Rebellion is brewing!
Bristol is uninterested in revolution
Teachers are informed of revolt!
Guidelines for the revolution. Kids begin deliberation at 1:30
Students insist...What are the rules???
Students see twitter feed.
Girls form a circle and use rainstick. All is quiet. One at a time.
total gender division
The students in the sunroom attempt to elect an official: one male and one female
Students flee chaos and join circle.
Another faction forms!
More science demanded... Only 4 students hear.
Noise is an issue for some groups
Looking for someone with "natural leaderrship skills" - Lots of people think they qualify
Use of microwave gets loud cheers. So loud that security steps in...students volunteer to move.
Students draft schedule
Potential leader removes name from nomination list.
Quote: "I need to get out of this room...they're talking about doing school work."
The girl circle has disintegrated...about half left
Some thinking small groups might be more effective, but arguing about that, as well.
Quote: "guys I want to have a good future, let's not mess around"
No general plan for getting together as a large group arising...everyone off on separate tangents
Hey, we really need to talk about academics...everyone leaves!
One student becomes the self-proclaimed president of his democracy. Begins recruiting members by offering offices - vp, senator, etc
Student who longs for learning finds small audience of 5.
"I Can't believe this! This is the best school in the world!" a student says and he heads off to find a leader.
My head hurts.
We could all teach the things we know best. The real teachers could watch.
Suggestion of Nap Time gets mixed reactions...
Meeting scheduled at 2:35 for two representatives from each group
"Who is someone that everyone listens to?"
"No one is listening...except to us. Want to join?"
Video games about to become subjects.
"Everyone hates me since I tried to be governor" - former leader
Students call for no more Gotchas (proofreading exercises). Half the words on the board are misspelled.
3:00 pm - 9:00 pm school day proposed...opposed by group that wants free time at night.
Great discussions about who should be the representatives
The orange leader asks,"Are you joining?"
Some truly serious educational conversations going on. Some truly inane conversations, as well
The girl room has less yelling...
Tension rising! Frustration felt by many!
Lots of groups publishing ideas...
shorter classes, time left over to be used as study hall and "downtown Raleigh" time one suggestion
"It's the same thing that's happening in the middle east - people are splitting up by beliefs. It's not going to work." - concerned student
Half of girls write a mission statement. Do other factions have this?
Press plans to attend 2:35 meeting.
"I'm just trying to decide what group I'm going to be in."
Voting for sunroom leader takes place.
Representatives from all groups scheduled to meet at 2:35. So far, no one has shown up.
A.B. and O. D. become leaders of the sunroom through majority vote.
Students have arrived in the yellow room for the group meeting. Somewhere in the distance, I hear a rainstick in an attempt to gain order.
All representatives step forward...
Girls on one side of the room, boys on the other. We seem to have everyone's attention.
A.B. calls meeting to order.
Each group will present ideas, then the public will vote. Difficulties keeping order continue.
Lots of side conversations...even with rainstick and requests to get quiet.
W.S. presents a campaign speech.
Followed by boos.
L.F.'s proposal: teachers blitz, video games, dance, and Nash Square for an hour.
Boo erupts from dissident while L.F. and W.S. share vision for school.
C.B. proposes off campus lunch. L.F. chimes in, "with a parent's permission."
O.H. and C.D. propose electives such as origami.
C.D. and O.H. suggest daily electives taught by students, lunch off campus, and outside time.
A.B. and O.D. insist that everyone's opinion is included in their plan.
Apparently, study hall= free time.
O.D. proposes individual caldendars for TOAST and math.
O.H. and A.B. suggest extended periods of free time with shorter classes. We want everyone involved. We will compromise.
M.A. suggests one room for quiet and one room for free time.
We finally get it! - M.A.
M.A. and L.A. insist that new cube configuration will be more equitable.
C.F. advocates for algebra students by asking that math time not be changed.
Three girls leave...reporter is there capturing their ideas.
E.E. wants more choice in theme material and shorter Prime Group time.
Final option for one 7th grader - flee 7th grade!
V.G. proposes double math on Mondays, then no math on Tuesdays, giving time for "practice".
V.G.- get rid of morning meeting
Meeting still in progress.
One student is all alone in the red room. Why?
R.M. and A.R. suggest shortening math and TOAST by 15 minutes. Or is it 10? Even elected representatives seem to disagree.
It seems that students have been deprived of ipods.
A.R. and R.M. share as the last group. Students whisper "This is taking forever".
Students are reminded that it is time to leave. Revolution will be brewing overnight.
W.S.- A house divided will fall. We need to get our ideas together and communicate.
Everyone applauds, then leaves.
Teachers signing off. Time to regroup and get some rest. It could be an interesting week...
C.F. while walking out..."Imagine if there were millions of us and not just 64!"
C.B. says she is not sure if she should come to school tomorrow.
L.H. says "This is going to be a complete disaster, a COMPLETE disaster". This was after he was accused of stealing ideas.
8th graders jealous as they hear about the revolt.
Whispering and discussions begin.
Teacher asked to call local radio station.
Sunroom faction develops new daily schedule.
The new schedule...
Article about the revolution in the News and Observer
We've gone national. CBS Radio NYC just called.
FOX news just called.
Students are currently attending Global Arts classes - Art, PE, Spanish, French. Revolution talks in small groups - more action at 1:30
Some students plan during lunch. Those who were absent get pulled in to the most vocal group.
The AP has picked up the story. Numerous versions on the web.
Emphasis placed on the fact that the revolution was a success...now students must focus on the future plans.
Large student migration from sunroom to red room.
Meeting begins in the Red Room: "representatives only" we were told.
Large group meeting...is anyone listening?
Now...a real conversation takes place. Ideas are pitched and questions asked.
Faction of boys still trying to find ways to contribute, they start by making shadow animals with computer projection of twitter feed.
Meeting of leaders still happening in Red Room. Girls propose freedom for those not in "working lunch" boys want to abolish "working lunch".
Small group advocates for long term change. They are hoping to organize a whole class discussion.
"this could go national and I don't want to look like an idiot" - frustrated student
One student proposes whole-group meeting at 1:50. Another student's response: "It's like we're starting all over again."
Students work close to twitter feed.
8th grader offers input. "Let students attend any class they want."
Attempts to begin meeting fail. Some want new schedules. Others say it isn't important.
Several boys sign up for a group with an unclear purpose.
Request that students vote on new ideas. Denied.
Students' rights? On the board students write, "I have the right to attend meetings and state my opinion."
Ideas are posted for all to see.
Suggestion that "only certain people be allowed to talk" greeted with loud outcries
Morning meeting one day a week?
Seattle radio station wants an interview with Karen at 3pm today
A list of suggestions is voted on by approximately 30% of the students
oops! CBS Seattle radio wants the interview
Declaration made...We need to have some academics.
Some feel that the loudest voice should be the most important
Principal monitors the situation closely.
"This is chaos!" one student says while storming out of the room.
Students realizing the entire grade needs to agree on ONE schedule! Meeting set for 2:;15 in the yellow room.
"You guys think this is organized" L.P. expresses the frustration felt by many.
"They keep rejecting my ideas. I am not going to the meeting." J.S.
"There is just no focus anymore!" S.A.
Students plan around the "freedom board" before heading to whole class meeting.
"We are not fools. We want our government to look strong!" C.B.
Students call meeting a "party" and try to increase attendance at meeting.
Live interview with Seattle CBS radio in 10 minutes.
Stress reaches new heights as time limits draw closer.
Everyone hopes there are no tears today. Communication is a challenge.
The rain stick is not getting students attention at all!
Meeting is yet to start... one small group leaves in frustration. Gaining order seems to be difficult.
Two main groups -mixed gender! A few smaller groups remain.
Girls want to know if they can split into two different countries... one group of boys seems to be posing resistance to any academic ideas.
Does standing on the chair give authority? It seems to be working.
Have they given up completely?
Small clusters of students resign to let others represent them. We have origami and coloring from the minority.
Message written on yellow room board: "Think of the children! They are the future!"
Large group tries to organize a vote on the schedule options.
Student lying on the floor of the red room saying, "This is too much."
Everyone heads to yellow room... A vote?
Entire grade gathers! Rumor of a vote draws everyone together.
Students trying to convince "twitter press" to tweet what they want. The twitter press cannot be controlled.
EP collects all schedule proposals
Whole group except for three gathers for vote.
LP asks everyone to sit down so ideas can be heard.
Proposals are read with relative quiet.
Standing on the chair again...seems to be effective.
Three schedule options shared. Order still maintained. The students motivated by change.
Everyone seems to be listening to the ideas being read...are we on the brink of a decision?
Students listen AND watch Twitter feed. All six options successfully shared.
The schedule vote begins!
"What are the rules for voting?"
The red room resistance gives up and comes into the yellow room.
"Can we compromise?"
"No way, that will create chaos again!"
Voices sound urgent as the clock winds down.
More chair standing.
DB yells, "Three wins!!! It's over!!!"
Is it true?
Boos, cheers, and applause...
The day concludes with cries of "Three wins!" and lots of applause.
We'll see what happens tomorrow...
Live radio interview went well. Did anyone hear it?
Small groups voice their frustration with a group of boys that shut out other ideas through loud applause.
"We've thought about the schedule... but there is still so much more to decide" - B.H.
There is no one unified voice! There is never peace in politics.
Small groups of students start planning before school.
Small group of 8th graders try to start a revolution. Posted signs are quickly removed. Is this the start of something larger?
Students gather. Intense discussion about the validity of yesterday's vote.
"One plan is better than no plan" - AB.
7th graders are given a deadline of 2:15pm to present new schedule, rules, etc to teachers.
Groups beginning to form. All seem to be feeling the strain of a deadline.
A group has a typed list of proposed changes.
Papers being passed around for perusal. Schedules??
Students deliberate over lunch.
Not schedules - "rules" they say
List includes: electronics at all times, gum, free seating, food/drink, no weekend homework, hats, and more...
Basically, "we can sit anywhere, do anything"
"These are just ridiculous!" some say.
List also includes: working lunch for students missing several assignments, parents will not be notified of missing/late work...
Students want to choose what they learn every other week...
Small group of people seem unhappy with the direction things are moving.
Lunch is over but the discussions continue...
CF asks everyone to stay in the yellow room so that discussion can begin. A group of boys immediately exit the room
Four students withdraw...
"Our ideas have already been said." LA
Four more students opt out in favor of origami.
Probably half just sitting and waiting for someone to make some decisions.
16% of students no longer involved...
Rule changes proposed via index cards. Suggestions include ipods during free time and no homework on weekends.
LH- "Can I turn off the lights? That sometimes helps."
Rules are edited by a concerned group. "allowed to chew gum" gets nixed
On one of the boards: "Teachers have rights, too."
(Actually, "Teachers have rights to" but it hurt to write that.)
"Is there any way to lock everybody in this room?"
response to kids that keep fleeing the discussions.
"We got the rule we really care about (iPods). We are done."
...as leaving room.
"Do you want your vote to count?"
"No, I'm good."
AB gives encouraging "We want your voice heard" speech in the dissident room. "Now is the time"..,
One representative humbly pleads to sunroom group, "Will you please come to the yellow room? We just want to talk."
Students huddle around computers to type up draft plan.
AB's speech gets all but three to re-join.
Two groups at computers. One works on a list of rules, one composes a spreadsheet with a 7th grade schedule.
Group starts making signs.
One sign says"Protest"...the other says "Listen to the Ponies" (???)
The student quoted in the AP story feels optimistic that iPod usage looks likely. Spends rest of time socializing.
Suggestions are getting specific.
"Ipods are only for music."
Trying to use the Titanic bell replica to get order. Think this is significant?
"Teachers will hve the right to teach and punish students."
"I don't like punish - put 'control'"
What does apathy look like?
Oh, the pain....
Several drafts of rules float around.
We are posting ideas on the board. Why can't we talk about them?
We want to be able to put our feet on chairs.
Options getting feedback.
Titanic bell keeps ringing. No responses.
Protesters arrive in wake of new rules
Students seeking attention enter room with signs.
Only minutes remain before the new Exploris schedule will be revealed.
Can they make a decision? That is the question.
L.P. stands on a chair yelling "Guys!!" to get the chaos under control.
The "Let's go Gandhi sit in front of the projector"
protestors admit they do not know what they are protesting.
AB gets room mostly, perhaps only somewhat, under control. "Please come vote".
Does anyone absolutely hate the idea of i-Pods during free time?
No, wait, NO!
EP reads out options. Students shout feedback.
Reading rules out, some listening, many yelling. A small group of boys creating rage in others by throwing paper.
Kids in the back yelling WE WANT ......
If they had been actually listening, most of their demands have already been agreed on.
"Ignore the guys throwing paper."
What are they talking about?
Do I object?
Strategy - vote on both the positive and negative form of each rule to clarify the preferences of students.
Free seating in every room, but teachers can move you if you are disruptive.
No! Teachers can't move you.
Now, trying to read out all rules...the "what ifs" begin!
One group's only aim is to disrupt.
Sabotage begins... Yelling and paper throwing.
Many have no idea what they are voting on.
Eat out on Mondays
Show of hands for each idea.
Student led clubs/lessons gets lots of disagreement.
Four minutes left. If no written plan agreed on by most, no plan will go into effect.
Three minute warning!
Frantic typing by two groups...are they in agreement?
Boys holding "Disagree" and "Agree" signs. Randomly.
Noise level is almost unbearable for adults.
"Hey guys, we have a final."
Wait, what is it? Did we agree on this?
Disgruntled groups grousing about the results.
EP "We have our final." CHEERS and applause
Students quiet. Copies printed for each teacher.
Teachers read over proposal.
The guys say "What?!?" to some of the proposals. They were too busy holding signs and throwing paper to get their ideas included.
Teachers reading plan to students in first period of silence in three afternoons
Students placed in groups of four. Reflection questions are discussed.
Students given half sheets with reflection questions to discuss at tables. Questions all in "fives" - 5 emotions, 5 difficulties, etc.
Teachers are glad that the press did not show up today.
The schedule is not too different. Includes more breaks, shorter classes, and study hall.
"I was really disappointed in the silly ideas." EP
Teachers discuss proposals.
Teachers approve all ideas for Thursday and Friday.
Basically, since groups of (mostly) boys being so disruptive, steadier hands prevailed. Results workable, logical, and thoughtful.
Student frustrated with today's results: "I just wanted gum!"
This was so unfair! They voted against us.
One table's labels for the factions that formed: boy group, girls group, group that tried to take over everything, quitter group, wanderers
Will continue to tweet tomorrow with reactions to the new rules. Going home!
Smiles, exhaustion, disappointment, and giddy conversations about tomorrow's changes.
Students share plan with 8th graders after school. "Are you serious?!? This is insane!" SC
8th graders start a peaceful protest to lift the goldfish cracker ban. Numerous students wear armbands in support of the cause.
Armbands throughout 8th grade.
Disgruntled boys made their own twitter account last night : @boysagainst
Free seating worked fine in 2nd math too. One student had to be moved.
Hats and free seating are not disruptive in 1st math.
Students share music at lunch.
The mysterious @boysagainst author tweets from lunch! A violation of rules! Grade level meeting is called.
@Boysagainst author confesses to tweet. Claimed ignorance of rule specifics. He loses iPod privileges. Honesty is appreciated.
Q1: How do you wish the process had gone?
- BM - Wish it had been more quiet and peaceful.
- BH It wasn't as easy as I thought it would be!
- SA - We should have begun in a more organized way so that the end wasn't so chaotic.
- Boys feel that there should have been a male and female leader to help facilitate that.
- Girls feel that they tried that and boys weren't receptive to that in the beginning.
- There was confusion as to who was doing what and people didn't agree. (unknkown student)
- SA - "There were no adults. So as a 7th grader they didn't want to listen to us"
- OD - The girls said "we're the majority, we're still going to win"
- LP - Each group has 2 leaders, but we had like 5 groups and it was too much
- CF - We should have had someone leading the meeting, like morning meeting
- MA - There was fighting for attention
Students asked to talk louder - they are strangely quieter today
Q2: Did this become boys vs girls?
- Maybe . . .
- Students seem to agree that it was at times, but not always.
- LA - Girls seemed more serious and wanted to have a good plan.
- ND - the boys wanted one really fun day and the girls wanted something that could be long term - more serious.
- LA - Freedom Board was started to gather all ideas and no one took it seriously.
- MA - CF said before theme that we all needed to stay in a big group and I was SO glad! We should have worked together!
- LF - so much time was wasted
- ND - People felt like they weren't going to be heard.
- HM - At the last meeting, the girls were trying to get everyone quiet and the boys were being crazy.
Q3: What should the role of the teachers be?
- "We took take for granted that we could always ask teachers for help and in this we couldn't." CB
Q4: What are the downsides to having the type of freedoms that you had this week?
- SM "We lost time when we were fighting about a leader"
- OH "Some people were taking this as a joke and that wasn't working"
- some students mention silly ideas that wasted time
- "Nothing in the final plan was what a lot of the students were asking for" JS
- CD "When meetings were happening we didn't know to go give our suggestions"
- EP "We disregarded ideas like "party all day."
Switching students - new 16 in the "fish bowl" talking and other 16 listening
Q5: What is the difference between chaos with direction/purpose and chaos without purpose/direction?
- Protesters were protesting because they wanted something
- OH "In the beginning, the protesters wanted something, but then it progressed to throwing paper and yelling for no clear reason"
- JS "They were protesting for something and kept going with that same purpose"
- LH "JS was protesting because he wanted gum and he kept his purpose"
- AB "There was chaos with a purpose because they were trying to drown our the other voices"
- OH "There was a more productive way to get attention" (other than protests)
- EE "It wasn't the best way to do it, but they wanted something and we didn't put it in the plan."
- TP "We had a fair vote and they tried to run down time and stall and wanted a recount"
- EP "We were trying to discuss rules, but people wouldn't listen"
- EW "I think that people thought that we had to have chaos for it to be a "real" revolution"
Students are told that they will have a similar experience on a Field Trip in April. How will you handle that process? Think about it.
Group of students switch - the other 32 come into discuss the outcome. 16 students in the "fish bowl" and 16 students listening.
AA tells students that their personal reflections (from HW last night) were very insightful and interesting.
Students who are listening are given sheets to take notes on while listening. Listeners can join circle 1 time to talk if they have input.
Q6 What did you learn about yourself?
- BH - You have to sometimes wait to see if something works
- JK - Let other people do what they want to do
- CF - You have to actually say what you want and not hope someone developes mental powers to just know (Very wise statement!)
- Sa - People are not going to wait for you to bring your ideas because things are always moving forward
- AS - Signs don't work in a 7th grade protest
Q7 What did you learn about others?
- Not to trust the "reporters" they sometimes aren't on yourside
- Some groups who felt pushed off would come back in and try to push back
- BM - Some people don't listen to other peoples ideas
- General student reaction was that everyone felt like they weren't listed to
- RM - It seemed like it was a populatiry contest
- I felt bad because there were people who were sitting in corners - SDM
Q8 Talk about the role of the teachers . . .
- BM - They could have done a lot more!
- SDM - What if they had locked themselves in the office and not come out?! They were there.
- SA - Seeing the teachers in the room helped keep some people from screaming
- BH - When the media (teachers) were there, we asked them to tweet our ideas because we wanted our idea to be heard!
- JK - If the teachers had made us focus, it would have been different
- SA - Without them stepping in, we had to figure it out for ourselves. It was "OUR" project!
- BM - I think that we could have had a little more freedom today (the boys)
- Students felt like the teachers "streched" the new guidelines and didn't give them the freedom that they expected.
- "They found "loopholes" like a lawyer!
Last question for this group "what are the pitfalls" of this type of activity?
- Things can definitely get out of control! - RM
- defined pitfalls as risks
- an hour of study hall replaced 10 minutes of instructional time and morning meeting/prime group (homeroom)
- Students have concern that new schedule isn't as "educational" as old schedule (we are only using it for 2 days)
- Free seating has been really nice - students agree - less noise in their opinion
- Blitzing after lunch only was better - because we haven't been messy at break
- Some students feel that the breaks between classes (5 minute breaks) seem like a waste. Not enough time to really DO anything.
- Others like the few minutes to just catch their breath.
Circle switch - final for this activity. The last group gets to share their opinion.
Q Explain your reaction to the applause that happened at the end of the day 2
- Happiness that something had been decided!
- LF - While clapping, other students wanted to make changes/compromise.
- AR - Chaos kept people from understanding what was going on!
- Students feel that the typing of the schedule was not quite accurate and that changes/mistakes were made. Times were not what voted on.
- There seems to be confustion that what was decided Tuesday is NOT what was the final plan. Teachers question the difference.
- JP - Feels like the writing was difficult to read and may have caused difficultly.
Q Chaos with direction vs chaos without direction. Which did you see?
- Chaos without! Some students feel like it was because they didn't know what do to do. And there wasn't a voted on leader.
- LF - if this were real, we just would have gotten away from the fighting.
- EL - We waited a really long time on that last day - 10 minutes before the final plan was due. We should have been working on it all day.
- The people shouting and yelling were not helping. Sharing quietly was more effective in my opinion. MA
Q What would you do differently to be more effective?
- Seminar remains thoughtful and respectful as opposing views are shared.
- LA - Everyone in one room and get an idea from each person. Take them all into consideration. Not having 10 different groups.
- Another student wanted to make 2 groups and try to make 2 plans and vote.
- ND - a big group might have created more protests. The different groups had the option to make a plan and feel heard.
- MA - Smaller groups had trouble sharing ideas with a larger group.
Teacher: Was there at least 1 thing that you couyld have done to make this better for you and others?
This group is told about the Field Trip in April to Heifer Village and how they have opportunity for different experience there.
JK-I thought about the similarity between this and the Field Trip when I was writing my reflection.
EL - makes connection to this and the Middle East. Says that we could have learned that chaos doesn't work from their example.
Students are glad that there were only 64 of them! Not Millions!
Students question weekend homework . . . will they have it or not?